"Somatechnics of 'Size': Queer Interventions" Edited Collection - 15 August, 2009

full name / name of organization: 
Samantha Murray & Nikki Sullivan
contact email: 


Following preliminary publisher interest, Nikki Sullivan and I are currently preparing a proposal for a book collection tentatively entitled "The Somatechnics of Size: Queer Interventions." This book, like our co-edited collection Somatechnics: Queering the Technologisation of Bodies (which is currently in-press, and due for release in September 2009) will be part of the Queer Interventions series, published by Ashgate, the current general editors of which are Michael O'Rourke and Noreen Giffney. More information about the proposed collection, 'The Somatechnics of 'Size': Queer Interventions' can be found below:

Somatechnics is an emerging area of scholarship and a mode of critical inquiry concerned with highlighting the inextricability of soma (the body) and techné (techniques), insisting that technés are not something we add/apply to the body, but are rather the dynamic means in and through which corporealities are crafted. As such, the term reflects contemporary poststructuralist understandings of embodiment as the incarnation or materialization of historically and culturally specific discourses and practices, and of any activity involving bodies as fundamentally inter-corporeal, (trans)formative and ethico-political.

Much of the research undertaken under the umbrella of somatechnics could be said to share political, ethical, epistemological, and methodological commitments with what is currently referred to as queer theory and/or practice. Queer, at least as we understand it, is a heterogeneous and multidisciplinary practice aimed at denaturalizing the normalized.

"The Somatechnics of Size: Queer Interventions" aims to mobilize these critical practices in relation to conceptualizations of (in)appropriate 'size'. We are seeking work that considers 'size' in a wide range of ways, as indicated by the list of possible topic areas below:

· Body size (obesity, anorexia, height)

· Eating Practices/Dieting/Portion 'control'

· 'Size' of particular body parts (the nose, ears, etc)

· Surgical augmentation/reduction (penile enlargement, implants, etc)

· Genital surgeries, female genital cosmetic surgeries

· Nanotechnologies

· Architectural Spaces and Spatial (Trans) Formations

· Monumental art and/or Public Structures

· 'Crowd' politics and mass demonstrations/gatherings (ie public mourning gatherings for Michael Jackson, etc)

· Fame and celebrity ('big' stars, etc)

· 'Size' and nationhood/population 'control'

· Pregnant embodiment

· 'Size' of families (Nadya Suleman octuplets, etc)

As is customary with all Queer Interventions titles, contributions (word length of no more than 6000 words) will be anonymously reviewed before they can be formally accepted for the volume.

If you are interested in being part of this project, please send us a proposed title and brief abstract (no more than 300 words). We would be grateful if you could respond no later than 15th August, 2009 to the email addresses listed below. Please also forward this invitation to others who may be interested.

Kind Regards,

Dr Samantha Murray and Associate Professor Nikki Sullivan

Somatechnics Research Centre
Department of Media, Music & Cultural Studies
Faculty of Arts
Macquarie University
Email: smurray78@gmail.com